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Seika had always been unusually quiet, unlike her elder sister. Seishuku did not harboured any romantic feelings for her or any of the other girls in the village, as he realized he was waiting for Yuri even before he remembered his life as Hotohori, but sometimes Seika would join him in a companionable silence as he gazed at the view of Konan from some vintage spot. She was only one year younger then him but he regarded her as a little sister like girl, perhaps in the similar fashion he had regarded his priestess as.
“Seishuku, have you heard from Hojun? Is he well?” Seika whispered out in that quiet voice which Hojun so adored. “He does not write to me because he…”
Her companion only nodded as he was doing a mental calculation at the same time. The last time the two met would have been about eight months ago, at his wedding to Yuri.
“Tell him that I don’t want anyone else, and I will wait for him forever!” she declared passionately.
“Seika…” he was rather unsure of how to respond, at one hand he believed that a person should wait for the person they love forever, just as he had waited for Yuri, but yet at the same time he felt that this advice sounded quite heartless.
“Hojun does love you,” he finally decided, “In his last letter to me he wrote that…”
What he wanted to say next was interrupted by a sharp scream, to his horror he recognized the source as from upstairs. And right now there was only one person upstairs.
“Yuri…” he whispered.

Yuri was sitting upright on the bed, the sheets crinkled due to her hands clenching at it tightly. The long strands of her hair had escaped from their plait as the white ribbon was broken, and her hair was plastered onto her face and back due to sweat.
Upon hearing footsteps she quickly grabbed the discarded blanket and pulled it over her, concealing her body which she was sure was bruised, even though she had not examined it yet.
“Yuri, what is wrong?” naturally, Seishuku was the first man to enter, followed closely by his parents.
Standing a bit further in the corridor were Miaka and most of the celestial warriors, with the exception of Genro, who was too occupied, and Ryoen, who probably only thought that his sister in law was being a bit hysterical due to some nightmare. Like it or not, that would have to be her excuse to the rest of the world.
“I am fine!” she laughed rather shrilly, pulling the blanket up even more.
Strangely, for no reasons at all she suddenly remembered the many times her mother had mumbled something in her dream, only to have forgotten all about it the very next day.
“I had such a nice dream last night, Yuri.” Her mother once told her as she began to brush Yuri’s long hair, she would lean against her mother- taking her presence there for granted.
“But what did you dream of, Haha?” the young Yuri would always ask, even though she might be absorbed in her new toy or the breakfast her mother would always lovingly prepare for her. Her mother always made sure that she had something she liked for breakfast, and insisted on brushing her hair everyday, even though she was a busy woman who ended up having to rush to work due to her little child’s tendency of staying in her bed until she had to get up.
Strangely, Yuri began to wake up very early with the death of her mother, and she would always regret the time lost to her because of her previous inability of waking up on time.
“I don’t remember, darling.” Her mother always laughed at this, “But I just knew that it was a very lovely dream.”
“Was it about otousan?” she once asked childishly, that had been when she first realized that it was not normal to not have a father. Every other girl often spoke of their father, or at the very least referred to him. But she, she had no father, as long as she could remember her home only consisted of her mother and her.
“Your father? No, of course not! What do I need him for!” her mother had declared passionately, “All I need to be happy is to have you beside me. You are my most precious treasure! Yes, I must have been dreaming about you since it was such a nice dream!”
Maybe she was thinking about her mother as she had become a mother herself.
“I had a bad dream, that was it.” Yuri told everyone easily. “I am so sorry to have caused you all so much trouble but it was just a dream.”
“What did you dream about?” Seishuku began worriedly, especially since she appeared rather dazed for a long time.
“I do not remember what it was.” Yuri lied for the sake of everyone else.
“Well, these things are not uncommon to a new mother.” Her mother in law quickly came to her rescue, even though she was completely unaware of how much Yuri wanted everyone to leave her chamber. “I used to have some sort of nightmares about Seishuku being hurt during the first year of his birth. To be honest I still worry about him even though he is a parent himself now!” this last sentence immediately lightened the tension in the room. Smiling, she told Yuri: “We’ll just leave you to rest then.”
“I will stay with you…” Seishuku began but he suddenly paused.
He quickly covered his halt by leaning forward to plant a kiss on Yuri’s forehead, but the object of his love saw that he had another motive, he ‘accidentally’ pulled her hair forward in order to cover the slight swell on her neck, and his hands were actually shaking slightly.
“You must be quite cold.” He said as he took another blanket and spread it over her, concealing the slightly visible bruise on her leg due to the small new tear in her nightgown.
Had he not been so shocked then he might have noticed the blue scroll that was placed on the floor, then he would not have reached his conclusion.
Seishuku was forcing himself to remain calm even though he was beginning to panic, but after all, he did have six years of training from being an emperor.
As soon as he ushered everyone out he slammed the door shut and locked it, but instead of rushing to Yuri’s side as he thought he would, he actually felt himself sinking to the ground, his hands barely managed to clench into fists.
“Seishuku?” Yuri whispered softly, she too expected that he would come and sit by her side and ask her what happened.
She wanted to stand up but found that she was still shaking a bit due to what happened in her dream, what Tenkou did to her. Instead of standing up properly she actually staggered down, the hem of her skirt happened to cover the whole of the scroll, which Seishuku might have otherwise seen.
Upon hearing the loud thud he immediately controlled himself enough to walk to her and took her into his arms. Holding her against him tightly he buried his face amidst her loose hair.
“I never ever thought that such thing would happen in this place,” he whispered, “But I still love you Yuri, no matter what. Tell me who did it and I will kill him.”
“Seishuku?” Yuri whispered, very puzzled. Initially she thought that he understood that she had saw Seiryuu in her dreams but his reaction seemed a bit too passionate. She could understand why he might be a little upset as what happened indicated that there would soon be trouble, but his actions still seemed rather extreme.
“I wish we can kill him that easily…” she whispered rather wistfully, feeling sad at the thought of having to part with Seishuku in order to go to Kutou, while he goes with Miaka to Konan. How would she tell him this in the first place? Knowing him…
“I will kill him!” Seishuku declared fervently, as he drew back to look at Yuri on eyelevel. “I will kill him for daring to do this to you. I don’t care who he is or what will happen, I will kill him. And I promise, I will still love you. No matter what happens, you will never be tainted.”
Yuri finally frowned openly and asked: “Seishuku, why would I regard myself as being tainted from talking to Seiryuu and then being attacked by some sort of demon?”
At this Seishuku literally chocked.
“That…that was what happened? Your wounds came because…”
Yuri managed to summarized what happened in her dream as brief as she could, as it was clear that her husband was highly agitated. As she finished Seishuku embraced her fiercely once again, only that he was laughing in relief this time.
“What did you think happened?” she asked.
“I…I thought you were raped. I couldn’t believe that any man in this village could actually commit such a crime but I didn’t know what else to think when I saw you lying on the bed with part of your bodies bruised.” He muttered out. “I’m so happy that nothing of that sort happened, but I want you to know that I would not stop loving you even if that happened. You will always be the most beautiful woman in my eyes, Yuri, and nothing that anyone do can ever destroy that beauty, not even old age.” (9)
Yuri managed to laugh too, she cupped his face between her hands and told him simply: “I can protect myself, Seishuku, you made sure of that by teaching me how to wield a sword, so you do not have to worry about that happening.”
He nodded, “But I still want to protect you, Yuri, even though I know that you can protect yourself rather well.” (10)

As they expected, Miaka was visited by Suzaku that night, unlike Yuri though, she has not met Tenkou due to what happened in Yuri’s dream. Suzaku had told Miaka what she must do as well as elaborating on the details.
They were to go to the universe of the four gods through the scrolls, the seven celestial warriors of Suzaku was to accompany their priestess to Konan, where they must find seven stones that contains their memories. In the case of Taka and Seishuku, who already gained back their memory, they would still find a stone only that it would be a bit different then everyone else. The only clue Miaka knew was that these seven stones represent the seven celestial warrior’s past.
The four of them pondered on what they should do for a long time, as it was impossible to disappear in this village without being discovered, but if they leave their village Seishuku and Yuri must take their children with them and the children would have be looked after.
In the end they decided to stay at Yui’s house, as she already knew about the universe of the four gods, and she was alone in her rather large house, as her parents were away due to an emergency business trip.
That was why two days after the celebration, Seishuku found himself on this train toward Tokyo with his wife and his children, as well as the six other who had been celestial warriors.
Using their excuse of visiting the grave of Yuri’s mother, everyone had nodded in understanding as they heard of their plan of going to Tokyo on such a short notice. The only one who expressed some hesitation toward their plan was his parents, who worried that their daughter-in-law was not completely recovered yet.
“But Otousan, Kaasan, I want to take them to see my haha now.” Yuri had reasoned.
Yuri was sleeping, leaning against him with a tattered blanket covering her, they were both dressed in the native costume of Konan as they had decided that such cloths would help them when they return to the universe of the four gods.
Looking at her he couldn’t but help to recollect everything once again, how it was like a sign of fate. Just before they were about to leave he had receive a phone call from Hojun, who was suddenly in Japan and planned to return to the village, after he offered many congratulations.
“Stay…stay in Tokyo and meet us there.” Seishuku had finally said after a long pause. It was just like the day when Yuri finally woke up from her coma. Everyone had been gathered together once again.
He bent down to put the blanket in place once again. As he did so he heard her whisper something softly, bending over he heard the word ‘Hotohori’, what his name had been.
“Hotohori? Why does she call you that, aniki?” Ryoen asked when he took the seat next to his brother, remembering what the strange name his sister-in-law often call his brother during the days before their marriage.
“Ryoen, do you know about the twenty eight constellations?” Seishuku began. “In the twenty eight constellations one of the constellations is Hotohori, and the kanji for Hotohori is exactly the same as the kanji in my name Seishuku.”
“She always does seem to be interested in stars.” Ryoen agreed, remembering the time he had found his brother and her outside at nighttimes, looking at the stars. “But aniki, why are you and Yuri not staying with Ju-An or I, but with Yui?”
“We have a reason…” Seishuku said softly. “You will find out soon, Ryoen.” This referring to how everyone was going straight to Yui’s house first as Miaka and Taka had something to announce.
“Are you two planning to get married?” Genro had immediately yelled out in the middle of the whole village. As to be expected, Ju-An had to spend the next few minutes to make sure that he was not too severely injured.
“So we will return there.” Seishuku whispered softly.
He wonders whether the people in that world would still remember him at all after all these times, as it might be longer in that world. He couldn’t help but to think of those who had been his family in that world. His family was not even a family, but yet he couldn’t help but to think about them.
Did he want to return to that world at all? He had been very happy in that world as that was where he first met Yuri and married her, and for two years they had been very happy. But the universe of the four gods had been a place where he had been tormented with guilt due to the great responsibility that he had, not only as a celestial warrior of Suzaku, but also as the emperor of Konan.
In the same way he knew that Yuri had been happy in Konan as well, because that was where the first met him, the first person to love her as well as receiving her love since her mother died. But at the same time he did not always made her happy.
One memory particularly haunted him, it was his last memory of her before she was killed. Could he face these buried memories? Memories that they hide amongst all their other memories because living it had been to painful. (11)


(1) This bit is referring to when Hotohori first saw Boushin, his reaction to his son. As I recall he said something like “He look just like me when I was little, such grace, wit etc.” I quite like that bit as I thought it was quite cute, as for Hotohori, saying anyone looks just like him is his greatest way of complimenting on their appearance.
(2) Once again, this is a way of showing how much he loves Yuri and his children, by thinking that they are actually more beautiful then him!
(3) I don’t fully know why I had this bit, maybe as a reminder that the past is always there, what happened in there was true so that it should not be forgotten. Once more, this refer to what Yuri feel in regard to what Miaka did.
In one version I actually considered letting Yuri and Hotohori remain in Konan as the emperor and empress, had that happen their daughter would eventually have married the son of the emperor of Kutou, and she would actually have ended up as the empress of Kutou, with her brother as the emperor of Konan (and he might have married the daughter of the emperor of Kutou.) But it would have been a marriage of love, they would have been friends with their future suppose since they were little.
(4) In regard to the window I did say that the village ‘Konan’ is rather rural so the windows are not made from glass. Since Yuri lives in the house of the village leader, the window is a bit better then the rest of the village by not only being a hole, it actually have a shuttle covered by paper (a bit like the window in Hotohori’s room that he chopped up)
(5) This is kind of one of the early hints that Yuri had not fully accepted Miaka.
(6) Nothing romantic here, he really is just doing this to make sure she wouldn’t get killed.
(7) Miaka would be able to have a longer talk with Suzaku as the attack on Yuri and Seiryuu made Tenkou much weaker.
(8) That is what I felt in regard to Chichiri’s fiancée, she just seemed like that, your very traditional Chinese woman, although I feel she is way too extreme, to feel that she could not be with the man she love just because another man kissed her by force.
She will be called Seika 聖華, and will actually be Shoka’s sister. Kind of why not.
(9) Somehow that just came, I actually quite like what Tamahome told Miaka after the whole Nakago incident, that nothing can defy and taint her, so that was why I wanted to use this concept in regard to Hotohori and Yuri, and I kind of stole part of Tamahome’s speech.
(10) I just had to add this last bit in because that is something I quite like about Yuri. She can actually protect herself tolerable well, but she does not become too reliant on herself, she will willingly accept other’s people wish of protecting her.
(11) The title of the story, I seem to always try and do this in many of my stories- incorporating the title.
Someone asked me why I dislike Miaka so and my reason has been because I feel that she never understand the whole situation, such as the bit when she went into Nakago’s tent and start eating. And another reason that I don’t like both her and Yui is that they never seem to truly realize what they done, what they caused to both Kutou and Konan as well as many others. And another thing I realize that now, I don’t like these type of people who are always good and uses love to convert everyone (abit like the seven seals in X-1999, which I don’t really like either) I just feel that there are times when you really have no right despite what happened in the past.

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